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Penn State creates virtual combines for potential football recruits

Penn State is using technology to move forward in recruiting by creating virtual combines for football prospects.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the NCAA Division I Council created a dead period in recruiting that prevents programs from evaluating recruits in person through July 31. With no way to see prospects at camps on campus or evaluate them at their high schools, Penn State's staff decided to take matters into their own hands.

The Nittany Lions created virtual combines to have something to evaluate for the current class, as well as underclassmen. In a normal recruiting calendar, college camps and combines are crucial parts of the process for underclassmen to gain exposure and for late bloomers to be seen by college coaches.

With the virtual combines, recruits will have an opportunity to get themselves in front of coaches. There is a website and Twitter account guiding prospects on the process, and the Penn State coaching staff made a YouTube video explaining how to take video, how to properly measure height, weight and hand width and how to submit the results.

Prospects can download an instructional guide that walks them through the process and includes the link for final submission. The recruits will be asked to measure themselves and conduct the broad jump, the vertical jump, the bench press, the pro agility, the 40-yard dash and flexibility drills, among others, on video.

The instructions also include warm-up techniques and options to prepare recruits for each drill, accompanied by a testing card with all the pertinent information.